Never Never Never Ever Discount Labor

"Why would we ever want to cut out from under us the one real leg we have to stand on?" 


This time of year (winter), it always seems a lot of shops offer tune-up deals.  

Is the idea is to bring in more work and get paid less for it?  What is the point of that? Doesn't that get you back to where you started? If that's the goal, wouldn't it be better to bring is less work for more money (or even better, more work for more money).  

All things being equal, and the quality of life for my employees being important, we'll take the latter every time. Why any shop would want to slog through more work and get paid less for it, I'll never know.



In a world where about every part and accessory that we sell is cheaper online (How Things Work Online), the only thing that keeps us around is our labor and our relationships.  Why would we ever want to cut out from under us the one real leg we have to stand on?

Maybe its the knee-jerk reaction of it being cold outside, and there's the feeling of needing to generate work when there are not so many people riding? They way you deal with that is by "shrinking the off-season" with events (races, trip, shop rides, classes, demos).  This keeps people naturally in-touch with your efforts over the winter.

The slippery slope of offering discounted labor will have negative long term effects.  For one, it trains you customers to expect a discount on labor.  Secondly, it devalues labor rates. Lastly it doesn't present a consistent message (if we're doing the same amount of work, why is it worth 25% less when its cold out?) 

"You cant hammer a nail over the internet"